As the owner or manager of a construction company, you most likely understand the importance of setting yourself apart from your competitors. In the construction industry, competition is fierce and every project counts. While marketing is important for bringing in new leads, many construction companies are stuck in the “old school” mentality that they have to run radio promotions and newspaper ads. These traditional marketing methods are almost always costly and can rarely be tracked effectively. This leads to a much lower ROI.
To effectively get in front of your target audience without spending an arm and a leg, you will want to invest in digital marketing. Here are five strategies to get you started.
1. Local keyword optimization
By now you probably have a website that markets the services of your construction company. However, that website may not be properly optimized so potential customers can find what you have to offer. This is where local keyword optimization can help. Local keyword optimization is the process of compiling a list of search phrases and topics that your target demographic is searching for to find your business and integrating them into your website. This process is also called “on-page search engine optimization” and it’s an important element of SEO.
How do you go about finding the right keywords? First, put yourself in the mindset of your target customer. What are they searching when they are in need of your services? Here are a few examples.
- “construction company in [your state]"
- “kitchen renovation in [your state]"
- “bathroom remodeling in [your state]"
To see if people are actually searching for these keywords, use the Google Keyword Planner. This tool will not only give you search volume but it will also recommend other keywords that might be relevant to your business.
After you’ve compiled a list of keywords that are relevant to your business, integrate them into your website. This can be done by turning the search phrases into content in the form of blog posts and pages on your website. Now you’ll have a website that is search engine friendly and optimized to bring in more highly-targeted local traffic.
2. Claim your company directory profiles
When someone is looking for a high-cost service such as remodeling or home construction, they spend a long time in the “research” phase. This makes sense because they want to ensure that the company they work with is reputable and will do a quality job for the amount of money that it costs. A potential customer will research construction companies by scouring the internet to learn more about the company (or companies) they are interested in. If they search for your company and see little to no information other than your website, you can bet that they will move on to another company.
As little as 5 to 10 years ago, all your business needed was a website to start bringing in customers. Today, you need to increase your online presence to cut through all of the “noise.” To do that, you need to claim all of the directory profiles that you can for your construction company. Here are some examples:
- Yellow Pages
- Google Business
- Yahoo Business Directory
- Home Advisor
- Merchant Circle
Don’t only claim profiles on general sites like Yelp or Yellow Pages. Be sure to look for industry directories such as Angie's List and The Blue Book.
3. Remarket to your site visitors
As I mentioned above, the buying process is longer for a high-cost services such as construction. This is because the buyer will usually always spend more time researching potential companies before making a decision. In this decision phase, the buyer will jump from website to website as they learn more about what options they have available.
What if you could market to them even when they weren’t on your website? With remarketing you have the ability to show advertisements to people who have visited your website and left without contacting you. These individuals are most likely in the research phase. In order to stay “top of mind,” you want to be in front of your target demographic while they are researching or thinking about who to contact. Remarketing makes this easy.
First, you place a tracking code on your website. Second, you design an add that, when clicked, gives them a way to contact you. Lastly, you let the ad run. The longer the ad runs, the more potential leads you have seeing it. This strategy is the perfect way to complement other digital marketing strategies such as the two above.
4. Run advertisements with local bloggers
Marketing is unlike advertising or sales in that it is more about building trust than anything else. Trust is what allows a sale to occur. Would you hand over your money to a business you didn’t trust? Neither would I. One of the best ways a local business can build trust online is to leverage the trust that a local blogger has already built. If you live in or around a city area, it is guaranteed that there are bloggers around who run websites talking about what’s going on in and around the town. While they may not have a huge audience, the people who read their posts and follow them on social media are highly targeted. Not only that but the blogger has gained their trust.
Here’s how you get started. Start by contacting the blogger and asking what their advertising opportunities are. The most beneficial opportunity for you would be a guest/sponsored post whereby the blogger writes about your business and promotes it on their social channels or email list. This is beneficial in two ways. First, it increases awareness of your business to a hyper-targeted audience. Second, it increased your online presence. Now, when someone searches “construction company in [your state]” or the name of your construction company, they are more likely to stumble upon this blog article and learn about your business from a trustworthy source.
5. Ask for reviews
For local businesses, reviews are the backbone of any digital marketing campaign. Why? Reviews are more than just social proof. Search engines use business reviews as a key indicator of where to put your website in the search results. That means more good reviews equals higher search engines rankings, which yields more targeted traffic and leads.
As simple as it sounds, asking customers to review your construction company is one of the best (and easiest) things you can do to grow your business. However, you want to be strategic about which sites you ask them to leave their review on. The two sites that Google seems to give the most weight to are Google+ (also called “Google My Business” for businesses) and Yelp. The more Google+ reviews your business has, the better chance it will show up in the local results box too, with your address and phone number next to your website information.
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